Tomatoes are a staple food in many European cuisines, especially Italy, Greece and Spain. Needing no actual cooking, they can be simply sliced and served as part of a salad, often served with basil and mozzarella for a simple summer lunch, or in a sandwich as a delicious BLT. Tomatoes are the star ingredient in refreshing gazpacho and salsas, or for a more warming winter soup.
Tomatoes are the base for many curries, a host of pasta and gnocchi dishes, and smeared on the base of a tempting pizza. Concentrated tomato purée can be added to sauces and stews to help thicken and add flavour.
Tomatoes can be used in many kinds of mediterranean dishes, Tom Aikens’ draws on Spanish influences with his summery Cherry tomato gazpacho, Galton Blackiston whips up a simple French provençal dish of Ratatouille, while Russell Brown looks to Italy with his Potato gnocchi and fresh tomato sauce.
For a speedy supper, Paul Heathcote uses tomatoes as the base for his Quick vegetable curry, and Marcello Tully makes them part of his simple Tomato mac ‘n’ cheese. The more adventurous should try Frances Atkins’ beautifully intricate Tomato and basil press.
For breakfast, Shaun Rankin makes a tempting sun-dried tomato bread, and who could forget the ultimate hangover cure, the Bloody Mary?